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Message from R2 Director:

Region 2 membership, welcome to 2022. Many of you haven’t met me, Mr. Barry Tilton, because with COVID very little has happened in the way of interaction over the last 20 months. I spent the first eight months of the pandemic as the DirectorElect for the region, and have been your Director now for a full year without ever setting foot outside of Northern Virginia on any IEEE business. This regrettable but necessary lack of engagement will hopefully be coming to an end very soon. If the Omicron variant is not followed by something immediately more challenging, IEEE plans to resume many activities as the northern hemisphere spring thaw occurs. I will be having my first live region meeting in Baltimore and the Board will continue its normal business hopefully starting in early March. Much of import to our region is on the table at the moment. IEEE is exploring whether or not the current region structure needs adaptation to the changes in world population and technical growth in other countries. As details on strategies for realignment become clear I will share these with the members and solicit opinions and impacts so that I may properly address them to the Assembly (the part of the leadership team where I directly represent the mid-Atlantic states). In other news the upside of the lockdown is that communications technologies have really flourished in response to the need for online integration of activities formerly held always in person. I am very much of mixed opinion concerning this evolution… Ongoing work is very easily adapted to the online format, but strategic activities and social activities both have a necessary in person component. The lack of this direct interchange face-to-face has led to reduced appreciation for diverse viewpoints as people naturally live in their own bubble – both physically and psychologically. It is my sincere hope that during the next 11 ½ months that I will get to meet many of you and discover your perspectives on how IEEE serves your needs and how we could do that better. 2022 President Ray Liu has established an effort to explore IEEE as your professional home as his signature effort for the year. I will be supporting this effort and seek your ideas on how the various members within the academic, industry, government, young professional and senior communities would best benefit from and contribute to our home.